High School Basketball

Somers’ heroics in final game lift Lynden to third-place trophy

Lynden players celebrate winning the third-place game of the 2A boys' state basketball tournament at the Yakima Valley SunDome.
Lynden players celebrate winning the third-place game of the 2A boys' state basketball tournament at the Yakima Valley SunDome. eabell@bhamherald.com

Lynden senior Sterling Somers made sure his name won’t be forgotten anytime soon with a memorable performance in his final game in a Lions basketball uniform.

Somers, who will play at Seattle Pacific next year and earned Co-Class 2A Player of the Year honors last week, scored 28 points, hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with seven seconds to play and then made sure that lead would stand with a block at the other end of the floor in Lynden’s 54-52 victory over Tumwater in the third-place game of the Class 2A State Tournament Saturday, March 5, at the Yakima Valley SunDome.

34 State trophies won by Lynden boys’ basketball program, including the third-place honor they won in 2015-16

“I was proud of our guys for coming out with a lot of energy even though their emotional tank was near empty after an emotional loss yesterday,” Lynden coach Brian Roper said in a phone interview.

After leading by 13 points at halftime, the Lions (25-30) watched Tumwater chip away in the second half and finally take the lead on a 3-pointer by Jacob Gibbons with 2:15 to play. The Thunderbirds’ run continued, as they built a lead as big as five points with 1:09 remaining.

But Somers hit a 3 — his fourth of five in the game — to stem the tide with 1:03 left and bring Lynden within two points. After Jacob Gibbons hit a jumper with 51 seconds remaining to push the Thunderbirds’ lead back to four points, Somers answered with a fast-break bucked with 32 seconds left to make the score 52-50.

That set up his game-winning 3 and his heroics on the defensive end.

“We are just glad we got one more possession,” Roper said. “Tumwater showed a lot of grit and toughness and we congratulate them on a great season, too.”

Unsung heroes

Andrew Kivlighn scored eight points, pulled down nine rebounds and had two assists in the game for the Lions. Noah King scored seven points.

“Kivlighn’s rebounds were huge and a career high for him,” Roper said.

Moving on

Besides Somers, who led the Lions in scoring this season with 18.9 points per game, Lynden will also graduate Noah King, who averaged 9.8 points this season, and Jordan Wittenberg, who hit a game-clinching free throw Saturday and averaged 7.6 points per game. Everyone else who went to state is expected back.

“They have been terrific and really embraced the younger guys on our team,” Roper said of Lynden’s three seniors. “They’ve left a strong legacy.”

State trophies

Year

Class

Place

2016

2A

Third

2014

2A

Second

2013

2A

Third

2012

2A

First

2010

2A

Sixth

2008

2A

Fourth

2007

2A

First

2006

2A

Third

2002

3A

Sixth

1997

3A

Third

1996

3A

Sixth

1992

1A

First

1991

1A

First

1990

1A

Sevneth

1989

1A

Third

1987

1A

Seventh

1986

1A

Second

1985

1A

Third

1983

1A

Second

1981

1A

First

1980

1A

Seventh

1978

1A

Fifth

1976

1A

Fourth

1970

1A

Fifth

1968

1A

First

1962

1A

First

1961

1A

First

1960

1A

Fourth

1959

1A

Fifth

1958

1A

Fifth

1942

4A

Fourth

1935

4A

Third

1931

4A

Seventh

1924

4A

Second

SOURCE: WIAA.com

Lynden 54, Tumwater 52

Tumwater

14

6

16

16

52

Lynden

14

17

8

15

54

Tumwater: Brian Marty 0, CJ Geathers 2, Cade Otton 7, Sean Gillespie 0, Spencer Dowers 4, Tyler Dowell 3, Gavin Yates 0, Jacob Gibbons 16, Weston Vandenhazel 20.

Lynden: Noah King 7, Clayton Whitman 0, Sterling Somers 28, Connor Shine 0, Andrew Kivlighn 8, Jordan Wittenberg 3, Christian Zamora 6, Davis Bode 0, James Marsh 2, Blake Silves 0.

  Comments